Target will stop selling the Kindle e-reader and other Amazon products
Target, which stocks a number of e-readers in its electronics department, has decided to stop selling the Kindle e-reader and its accessories.
"Target continually evaluates its product assortment to deliver the best quality and prices for our guests," company spokeswoman Molly Snyder said in an email Wednesday. "Target is phasing out Amazon- and Kindle-branded products in the spring of 2012."
Target will continue to sell other e-readers, including Apple's iPad and the Barnes & Noble Nook.
The New York Times quotes a more strongly worded letter sent by Target to its vendors: “What we aren’t willing to do is let online-only retailers use our brick-and-mortar stores as a showroom for their products and undercut our prices.”
In December, online retailer Amazon ran a promotion in which it offered discounts of up to $5 to shoppers who went to brick-and-mortar stores, scanned items for sale there, then bought the items from Amazon. While the offer caused a ruckus in the book world, books were not included in the list of items Amazon was offering to discount. Yet many other holiday gift purchases were: electronics, DVDs, music, sporting goods and toys.
With almost 1,800 stores nationwide, Target may be big enough to stand up to Amazon, something some smaller businesses have been reluctant to do. One independent publisher told Salon, anonymously, "You can’t really speak out publicly against them. They’ll hear."
-- Carolyn Kellogg
Photo: Amazon Kindles on display at Target in February. Credit: Carolyn Kellogg